How to Choose the Right Physical Therapy School near Hoschton Georgia
Getting a physical therapist degree near Hoschton GA is an essential first step to beginning a rewarding career in the medical care industry. Physical therapists (PT) help patients who have been debilitated due to injury or illness regain mobility and function. But before they can practice and work with the rehabilitation of patients, they need to obtain the proper training and education. A PT must additionally become licensed in all states, a large number mandating that the licensee earn a physical therapy degree from an accredited college. So prior to choosing a physical therapy school, it’s necessary to evaluate the ones you are considering to make sure they will deliver a superior education and meet your state’s licensing criteria. What you should not do is enroll in a school simply because it happens to be the nearest to your home or it has the lowest tuition. There are other significant qualifications that need to be considered along with location and cost. But before we talk about what those qualifications are and what questions you should ask, we’ll cover what a physical therapist does and the options for education.
What Do Physical Therapists Do?
Physical therapists work in diverse settings, including Hoschton GA hospitals, health clinics, rehabilitation centers, nursing homes and sports facilities. What the facilities all have in common is that they are equipped for diagnosing and rehabilitating patients. As earlier stated, physical therapists help individuals that are experiencing a lack of mobility and frequently pain due to illness or injury. After patient diagnosis, they design a program of treatment to deal with the mobility problems and lessen or eradicate any pain. They also strive to stop any advancement of the disability. Though the causes of disability requiring physical therapy are numerous, they include:
- Osteoporosis and Arthritis
- Car or motor cycle accidents
- Head injuries
- Cardiac arrest
- Sports injuries
- Burn injuries
- Knee Replacement
- Cerebral Palsy
Licensed physical therapists work in close affiliation with other Hoschton GA medical specialists, including doctors, chiropractors, dentists and nurses. They can also supervise one or more physical therapy assistants who work under them in the diagnosis and treatment of their patients. One thing to keep in mind for anyone considering getting into the physical therapy field, it is rather physically demanding. Physical therapists routinely lift patients and heavy equipment, and kneel, crouch and stand for prolonged periods of time on a daily basis.
Physical Therapist Degrees
There are three physical therapy degree options available for individuals to pursue at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Of these options, the single degree that is available to become a physical therapist is the doctorate. Undergraduate degrees emphasize either preparing students to become a physical therapy assistant (PTA) or readying them to advance to the doctoral level. Below are short descriptions of degree levels that are offered in the Hoschton GA area:
- Associate Degrees prepare students to become physical therapy assistants, or may be used as a stepping stone to a more advanced degree. Applicants must have obtained a high school diploma or GED to be accepted for enrollment. The degrees are usually provided by junior or community colleges, and require two years to complete. Clinical training, which may be in the form of an internship is usually part of the program.
- Bachelor’s Degrees are created as pre-physical therapist education to prep students to advance to the doctoral level. While they are not required to be eligible for the doctoral program, they are an essential preliminary step to practicing as a PT. Similar to most bachelor’s degrees, they typically require four years to complete and often include an internship program of at least 500 hours.
- Doctorate Degrees are required if you want to become a licensed practicing physical therapist. The degree program must also be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). After earning the bachelor’s degree, the doctoral takes 3 years to complete, making the overall investment of time seven years in the majority of cases. Clinical or practical training is an intregal element in addition to the extensive classroom and lab instruction. Therefor the fulfillment of an internship is required, not just for graduation but in a number of states for licensing as well.
The Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) has taken the place of the Master’s of Physical Therapy (MPT), which has been phased out and is no longer offered in the USA. Some licensed physical therapists holding a master’s or in some cases a bachelor’s degree were “grandfathered” in prior to the existing licensing requirement for a doctorate was implemented.
Physical Therapist Online Schools
While not as common as the on-campus options, there are a number of accredited online physical therapist programs offered, even more at the graduate level. Due to the hands-on nature of the training, clinical lab work and internships are combined with the online classes. This requires that the student live close to the college campus or nearby a sponsored internship. Fortunately, the online segment of the course of study may be accessed within the comfort and convenience of the student’s Hoschton GA residence. Online programs are not only partially more accessible, but in a number of instances more economical. Tuition might be somewhat lower than similar on-campus options, and expenses for commuting are reduced. And many of the online schools are accredited by the CAPTE, guaranteeing a quality education. These benefits may make the online option the ideal choice for those students that are dedicated enough to attend classes at home.
What to Ask Physical Therapist Programs
By now you probably have made a decision concerning a few of your initial queries, including the kind of physical therapist degree you intend to obtain, where you prefer to attend classes, and how much you can afford to spend for your education. But because there are numerous PT colleges within the Hoschton GA area and across Georgia, you’ll have to look into other qualifications also in order to further reduce your list of college choices. Also, you need to be sure that you pick the college that is right for you. That’s the reason we have compiled a list of critical questions that you need to ask the physical therapist schools you are considering. Ask each of the competing schools these questions before making an ultimate selection.
Is the Physical Therapy School Accredited? Find out if the colleges you are considering have received accreditation from a national or a regional agency. As earlier mentioned, if you are pursuing a doctoral degree the program must be accredited by the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education (CAPTE). If you choose an online school, it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council. It’s imperative that both the physical therapist program and school you select are accredited, not simply the school. Also, verify that the accreditation is through a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides guaranteeing that you obtain a quality education, accreditation may be mandated for state licensing and even for getting student loans or financial assistance.
What is the School’s Reputation? Along with accreditation, it’s imperative that the school and program you select have excellent reputations within the physical therapy profession. There are a number of ways you can look into a PT college’s reputation, beginning with requesting references from employers that they refer their students to. You may also check online rating services and reviews and ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Get in touch with several Hoschton GA physical therapy centers or other medical care facilities that you may have an interest in working for and ask if they can give you any recommendations about your college options. It might also be prudent to contact the Georgia Attorney General and school licensing authority to see if any complaints have been filed against the schools.
What is the College’s Job Placement Percentage? There are a couple of important statistics that you should find out about all of the physical therapy schools you are reviewing. First is their graduation rate. A lower rate might indicate that students dropped out due to displeasure with the program, the teachers, or both. After the students have graduated, what percentage of them are being hired with the assistance of the college’s job placement program, particularly in the Hoschton GA area? If a college has a higher job placement rate, it’s an indication that its reputation within the healthcare field is good or perhaps outstanding. It also confirms that the program has a large network of contacts to help students get internships or employment after graduation.
Does the School Support Licensing Requirements? It’s important that the program you choose furnishes both exceptional training and a course of study that satisfies the licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. In each state a passing score is required on the National Physical Therapy Examination (NPTE) along with a degree from an accredited physical therapy college. While licensing requirements vary state by state for PTA and PT graduates, many states require a minimum number of clinical hours be completed as well as passing scores on supplemental tests.
Are Internship Programs Provided? Find out if the physical therapist schools you are evaluating have partnerships with Hoschton GA hospitals or clinics for internship programs. Internships are not only an excellent means to obtain hands on experience in a clinical environment, they are additionally a requirement for the majority of PT programs and state licensing. As a supplemental benefit, they may assist graduates and students form professional connections in the Hoschton health care community and assist with obtaining employment once licensed.
How Big are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of student that prefers to sit way in the rear of the classroom or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly want a small class size. Small classes allow for more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the physical therapy colleges you are considering what the average student to teacher ratio is for their classrooms. If practical you may prefer to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you a chance to speak with a few of the instructors and students to get their opinions regarding the pharmacist tech program also.
Where is the School Located? For many students, the physical therapy college they pick will need to be within travelling distance of their Hoschton GA residence. Individuals who have chosen to attend online classes obviously will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of area internships will be of concern. One thing to bear in mind is that if you choose to enroll in a program that is out of state or perhaps out of your local area, you may have to pay a higher tuition. State colleges normally charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition for those students that live outside of their districts.
Is Financial Aid Provided? Most DPT colleges supply some form of financial aid to their potential students. Find out if the colleges you are examining have a financial aid office and see what kind of aid is obtainable. At a minimum they should help in getting a student loan or any scholarships you might qualify for. A number of physical therapy schools provide scholarships, while others offer work programs. So before you eliminate a program because the tuition is beyond your budget, learn what financial assistance might be available.
Can the School Accommodate your Schedule? And finally you must confirm that the physical therapist school you finally pick can furnish the class schedule you need. This is especially essential if you decide to continue working while attending school. If you must schedule night or weekend classes in the Hoschton GA area, make sure that they are offered. If you can only attend part-time, check if that is an option and how many credit hours or courses you would need to enroll in. Also, find out what the protocol is for making up any classes that you may miss due to work, illness or family emergencies.
Enrolling in a Physical Therapy Program near Hoschton Georgia?
If you are planning on attending a Physical Therapy School in the Hoschton GA area, the following information may prove to be both interesting and educational regarding the location of your future campus.
Hoschton is located in western Jackson County at 34°05′46″N 83°45′40″W / 34.096164°N 83.761083°W / 34.096164; -83.761083. It is bordered to the north by the city of Braselton. Georgia State Route 53 runs through the center of town, leading northwest 12 miles (19 km) to Oakwood and south 9 miles (14 km) to Winder. Jefferson, the county seat, is 12 miles (19 km) to the east, and Atlanta is 50 miles (80 km) to the southwest.
According to the United States Census Bureau, Hoschton has a total area of 2.6 square miles (6.7 km2), of which 0.02 square miles (0.05 km2), or 0.79%, are water. Water bodies in Hoschton drain west and east into tributaries of the Mulberry River, part of the Oconee River watershed.
The Hoschton ZIP code 30548 goes well beyond the city limits, and results in the post office delivering mail into four counties: Jackson, Gwinnett, Hall, and Barrow. Hoschton's ZIP code is used within about 40% of the Braselton town limits.
The Best Physical Therapy Schools Hoschton GA
Picking the right physical therapist program is a necessary initial decision you have to make to begin a fulfilling career in the medical profession. As we have addressed in this article, the PT or DPT degree program and college you select should both have exceptional reputations and accreditation. But there are other relevant questions that you should ask pertaining to your college of choice as well. You originally come to this website because of your interest in getting information on The Best Physical Therapy Schools. However, as you begin your search for a physical therapy program bear in mind that many factors will lead you toward your ultimate decision. You might decide to go to each of the colleges to see their facilities and talk with current DPT students. While there, ask yourself this critical question: will this school help me reach my goal of becoming a practicing licensed physical therapist? By following our list of supplemental questions, you will be able to narrow down the field so you can make the appropriate choice. And with the proper training and education, you can accomplish your dream of becoming a practicing physical therapist in Hoschton GA.
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